Hands Up Entertanment Inc.
Hi! My name is Nikiya and I am a professional singer/pianist/songwriter/composer. I am a dynamic, passionate and cutting edge instructor who loves to share all that I know with my students! Coming from a musical background, I was trained in classical music at age 5. While attending the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music in New York, I trained in a variety of genres. By 12 years old, I started a small business and began teaching friends, family and neighbors. At an early age, I discovered I possessed a talent in teaching and have been teaching ever since via in home/school/studio/groups/online. With over 20 years of experience as a performer and teacher, I have developed the formula needed to obtain results. By performing at Venues such as Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall and SOB's as well as performing/working with the likes of Anita Baker Diana Ross, Ne-Yo and Denise Rich, I have learned from the best. These experiences have taught me how to bring out the best in my students. My goal is to teach my students how to be confident and creative by allowing them to express themselves through music. I teach my students the language of music and how to use it as well as how to connect to it. This creates a love for music and encourages creativity. With this formula, my students enjoy learning music and continue on a long term basis because they love it! My method of teaching infuses my background in music and psychology and is designed on an individual basis and caters to the needs of the student. It is a combination of traditional and progressive learning. With my method, one can learn the language of music at any age and level. My youngest student was 2 years old in diapers and my oldest student started at age 65 years old. I'm excited about working with you and you will be amazed by how much you will learn in just the First lesson!
What I like most about my job is working with people from all walks of life/ages and watching them grow into a true artist. I love watching my students develop a love for learning while having fun with it. Seeing the growth and the end results is like watching a flower bloom.
Frequently asked questions
What is your typical process for working with a new student?
My typical process for working with a new customer is taking time to find out what their goals are. Once I assess their particular needs, I then design a program that works specifically for them to obtain those goals. This makes the learning process more enjoyable, relaxed and personal.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
The education and training I have that relates to my work is education in psychology and training in music( piano, vocals, theater, music theory). Both my training and education provides the tools necessary to get to the source and tap into my client's full potential. This develops in them true freedom, confidence and creativity.
How did you get started teaching?
A love of music has always been part of my life and. I grew up listening to everything from classical music to Haitian kompa. My parents are both musicians but didn't have the opportunity to take music lessons and are self taught. My mother vowed that when she had children, they would have a chance to train in classical music. She taught me what she knew and by the time I was 6, I started with private lessons and classes at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music. My friends, family, and neighbors wanted to learn as well but couldn't afford training. Inspired by my parents' experience and generosity, I started teaching at age 12 and shared what I was learning with musicians of all ages (my oldest student was 44!).
What types of students have you worked with?
The types of customers I have worked with are serious individuals who understand the importance of investing into their craft. They have a desire to grow as an artist and are dedicated to the process. The customers I work with are interested in developing their own sound and style and need guidance as to how to accomplish that goal. They are passionate and love what they do and always look for opportunities to grow.
Describe a recent event you are fond of.
One of the projects I am fond of is a client who is a lawyer and a professor who is in her 50's. She has a beautiful voice yet never trained and she was afraid to use it. When she did use her voice, she do so improperly. Unfortunately, she lost her voice due to trauma and other factors. With patience and time, we were able to get past the psychological blocks that were causing issues. She learned how to properly use her voice through breathing techniques, visualization and vocal exercises. I am proud to say she is now able to freely use her voice and even does performances!
What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?
The best advice I can give to someone looking to hire a provider like me is hire someone who is well rounded and experienced. Experience is priceless so never put a price tag on it. Focus on the quality of service as well as the experience, not the price. The expression, "You get what you pay for " couldn't be more correct. If you want the best, invest in the best.
What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?
What are my goals and why? Are they realistic? What are the benefits of obtaining these goals. What is my motivation and what will keep me motivated? What style of music am I passionate about? How much time am I willing to put into obtaining these goals? How much experience does the professional have? Do I understand results do not happen overnight and am I willing to do what it takes to get the results I want?